Michelle Obama: U.S. is ready for a female president

Michelle Obama: U.S. is ready for a female president
·Chief Washington Correspondent

The United States is ready for a woman as president, Michelle Obama told Parade Magazine in portions of an interview out Thursday. But the first lady took herself out of the running.

Will there be a female president in her lifetime, Parade asked?

“Yes, I think the country is ready for it. It’s just a question of who’s the best person out there,” Obama replied.

Will she ever run?

“No,” the first lady replied.

Will former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton get the job?

“She hasn’t announced anything, so I’m certainly not going to get ahead of her,” Obama replied. (Parade added the note [laughs] after that reply).

With the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I have a dream” speech looming, the first lady told Parade that she thinks having the first black U.S. president and his family in the White House will help change the country.

“Children born in the last eight years will only know an African-American man being president of the United States,” she said. “That changes the bar for all of our children, regardless of their race, their sexual orientation, their gender. It expands the scope of opportunity in their minds. And that’s where change happens.”

And Obama said she had “immense hope” for realizing King’s dream.

“We just finished our visit to Africa and spent time on Robben Island with one of President Mandela’s cell-block mates. Mandela took a lot of the lessons from Dr. King’s time to heart,” she said. “To come back to the United States, with an African-American president who has been influenced by both King and Mandela, that is a reason to be hopeful about all that Dr. King sacrificed.”